From Carnegie Hall to Ghana – Maritza Alarcon SVMP ‘07

2010 was an explosive year for Maritza Alarcon SVMP ’07.  Recognized by Glamour Magazine as one of “Amazing Young Women of 25” and serving as a volunteer teacher in Ghana, this young professional continues to surpass herself.


Can you share your background: where you grew up, your undergraduate experience and your interests?

MA: I am a Brooklyn native.  I was born, raised and educated in New York City.  I’m a 2008 graduate fo Baruch College, where I obtained my BBA degree in Entrepreneurship & Small Business Management.  I’m passionate about the power of “play” and sports, providing more inspiration and opportunities for less privileged youth around the globe and implementing revenue generating ideas…all at the same time.


What do you remember as the highlights of SVMP?

MA: One of the most memorable highlights was being interviewed for a feature to be posted on the SVMP website!  This of course allowed me the opportunity to share my SVMP experience with other Baruch students.  I conveyed to them how SVMP may open their eyes and demystify the Ivy League world.  I encouraged them to believe that they CAN attend any school their heart desires and to apply.  I also shared my experience in meeting HBS Admissions, Professors and current HBS MBA students who showed nothing by open arms and genuine hospitality.


Why did you go to Ghana?  What did you do there and what was your biggest takeaway from that experience?

MA: I’ve been fascinated by West Africa for a few years so through my alumni network, I was put in touch with Japhet Aryiku, a Baruch College alumnus, who founded the Adakum Educational Foundation in 2006.  I volunteered at L&A Memorial Academy in Accra, Ghana, which serves 330 students from nursery to 8th grade.  Ghana is a place where faith runs deep.  It is a country where generosity and warmth of its people are exceptional.  Also, I must say that I love to eat fufu–the staple food of West Africa.  After gaining new perspectives and creating wonderful memories with my Ghana family, I realize how much of a blessing it was to have such an opportunity.  For those interested, I give the experience my highest recommendation.


You were recently honored as one of Glamour Magazine’s ‘Amazing Young Women Under 25.’  Why were you selected for this award and if you could describe it in 3 words, what would they be?

MA: Yes, I was honored at Carnegie Hall in NYC for my volunteer work with M.O.V.E.  I’m a Co-Founder of the M.O.V.E. College Preparatory Program, a social venture MLT’ers and I started in 2007 that targets high potential, low-income public high school students in Manhattan.  We developed an important initiative that connects these students to young and talented professionals, for one-on-one mentoring, college immersion, SAT Prep and much more.  Three words: Oprah saluted us!


What advice can you share with alumni who would like to follow a similar path as yours?

MA: This is just one of the philosophies I wholeheartedly follow …The thoughts you think and the actions you take creates the life you make.  Choose your thoughts wisely.  Create and follow your own path–the path that springs from inspiration within you and live the life you’ve imagined.


Is there anything else you would like to add?

MA: First and foremost, I’m grateful for the interview, thank you.  If you would like to stay in touch, you can follow me @MaritzaAlarcon and read more about M.O.V.E. at  I am very excited about the college acceptance letters and scholarships the M.O.V.E seniors are currently receiving!